837.51 Public Works Debt/125: Telegram

The Chargé in Cuba (Beaulac) to the Secretary of State

106. The Secretary of State19 told me this morning that General Montalvo20 early last year informed the Cuban Government after conferring with Mr. Welles that the United States would confer additional economic benefits upon Cuba if an adjustment was made with the holders of the public works bonds. This information was confirmed by the Cuban Ambassador. He said the Cuban Ambassador informed his Government later that Mr. Welles fixed as an additional condition a settlement of the bankers credit and that subsequently both Mr. Welles and President of the United States had congratulated him on the settlement with the bondholders and bankers reached in February. He said that until the settlement approved by Congress in February the Cuban State Department had received the distinct impression from the Cuban Ambassador that our Government considered the settlement with Warren Brothers and Purdy & Henderson much less urgent than with the bondholders and bankers. He recalled, however, that following the settlement with the bondholders and bankers in February Ambassador Wright had urged upon him a settlement with Warren Brothers and Purdy & Henderson and that the Cuban Ambassador in Washington had continued to urge such a settlement since that time.

I told the Secretary of State that I did not understand how such an interpretation of our attitude could have been reached because the Embassy’s files show that the United States from the beginning took the position that it desired equal treatment and fair treatment for all the public works creditors and that Ambassador Wright had repeatedly impressed this upon Cuban officials.

Dr. Remos was uninformed concerning the Cuban Ambassador’s recent commitment to the court in Boston21 to reach an agreement before November 15. Dr. Remos said that the Cuban Ambassador was not authorized to make such a commitment.

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I urged upon Dr. Remos in the same terms recently used with other Cuban officials the need of immediate action to settle the remainder of the public works debt. Dr. Remos expressed appreciation of my frank exposition of the situation and said that he would communicate my views to the President and let me know his reaction.

  1. Juan J. Remos.
  2. Rafael Montalvo, then Cuban Secretary for Defense.
  3. District Court of the United States for the District of Massachusetts before which the bankruptcy case of Warren Brothers was pending.